Tag Archives: diabetic


Posted by Beverleigh H Piepers RN, Dated 24-11-2015

Getting through the holidays as a Type 2 diabetic can be challenging with all of the scrumptious food at your disposal. You’ve got to take extra caution in monitoring your blood sugar as you consider which foods you should and shouldn’t be eating. The situation becomes further complicated if you enjoy having a drink every now and again for, during the holiday season, nothing says celebration like making a few toasts to the family and the new year.

Cocktails Collection - CosmopolitanAs a diabetic, you should be aware of the “do’s and don’ts” of alcohol. Even if you only enjoy having a simple drink here or there, you should know how alcohol can affect you. In the end, there are some ways to enjoy an occasional cocktail, when mixed with care. As with food, every alcoholic mixed drink contains a different amount of calories, fat, and sugars, depending on the ingredients, so learning to craft a healthier recipe is an excellent way to enjoy without guilt or worry.

First of all, be aware of the effects alcohol can have on you. Drinking alcohol, even a few drinks, can increase not only your blood sugar but also your blood pressure. And in some cases, it can cause a rapid and drastic drop in blood sugar levels, which can also cause complications. Drinking alcohol can interfere with diabetes medicine, insulin, and other medications, and it can stimulate the appetite and lower your inhibitions.

With the above effects in mind, it is recommended you limit your alcohol consumption to one or two drinks a day for women and men, respectively. Enjoy your drink with a snack or a meal that follows your usual healthy eating guidelines, such as whole grain crackers, light popcorn, or low-fat cheese. And when crafting cocktails or mixed drinks, think outside of the soda and the juice-based mixers. Instead, opt for homemade mixers with fresh citrus (like lemon and lime juice), fruit-flavored spritzer water, and diet club soda.

Using a base of hand-squeezed lime or lemon juice, muddled herbs, such as mint, and a splash of sugar-free seltzer water, you can create some diabetic-friendly cocktails. You can even filter, dramatically reducing the alcohol and sugar content of wine by mixing it with equal parts of seltzer water over ice. Garnish with a slice or two of orange, and your healthy holiday mixer is complete.

As always, remember to keep your alcohol consumption to a well-balanced, moderate level, and don’t forget to check your blood sugar levels.

Glasses of cocktails on bar backgroundCitrus Wine Spritzer. This bubbly, refreshing spritzer contains relatively little alcohol and can be the perfect after work or social mixer. Makes four drinks…

4 wedges lemon
4 wedges lime
1 cup white wine
1 cup citrus flavored seltzer water

1. Fill four glasses halfway with ice. Squeeze 1 lemon and 1 lime wedge into each glass.
2. Pour ¼ cup wine and ¼ cup seltzer into each glass. Stir gently and serve.

Lite Mint Julep. The Kentucky Derby classic cocktail gets a makeover in this diabetic-friendly version. Makes four drinks…

4 lemon wedges
¼ cup fresh mint leaves
¼ cup bourbon or whiskey
1 cup diet club soda or plain seltzer water
Crushed ice

1. Squeeze lemon wedges into a tall cocktail shaker; leave peels in the bottom of the shaker. Add mint leaves; crush gently into lemons. Add bourbon; shake gently.
2. Fill four cocktail glasses almost entirely with ice. Strain bourbon mixture into glasses; fill each glass with about ¼ cup club soda. Stir gently and serve.


Beverleigh H Piepers RN
Type 2 Diabetes Health Coach

Facebook: DrugFreeType2Diabetes
Twitter: @diabetes2diva



Posted by Beverleigh H Piepers RN, Dated 26-8-2015

Large counter with chocolate candiesThere are several reasons why sugar is literally the worst possible food to have in your diet if you’re diabetic.

Here’s a list…

1. Sugar depletes your body of B vitamins and minerals. As a diabetic, you need every one of the vitamins and minerals you can possibly get.

2. Sugar causes insulin resistance, something that every diabetic does not need.

3. Sugar makes cancers grow in the body. It feeds them.

4. Sugars such as high fructose corn syrup cause liver problems such as fatty liver. Fatty liver is one more health issue you don’t need as a diabetic!

5. Sugar causes addictive disorders and makes you less sensitive to the effects of morphine.

6. Sugar releases huge amounts of dopamine in the brain and can create an addiction to all sugary foods.

7. Sugar causes overweightedness and obesity – and that’s ugly.

8. Sugar causes high cholesterol levels.

9. Sugar can contribute to hardening of the arteries.

Need any more reasons to stop eating sugar?

Next, find out why your doctor and dietitian keep telling you sugar is okay to eat for Type 2 diabetics.

Beverleigh H Piepers RN
Type 2 Diabetes Health Coach

Facebook: DrugFreeType2Diabetes
Twitter: @diabetes2diva


Posted by Beverleigh H Piepers RN, Dated 1-7-2015

Understanding how diabetes affects your body gives you a strong foundation for making smart decisions about your health. Test yourself with these quiz questions…

High blood sugar levels affects nerves, kidneys, eyes, blood vessels, heart and skin...

High blood sugar levels affects nerves, kidneys, eyes, blood vessels, heart and skin…

1. Diabetes is a disorder of protein metabolism. This is why diabetics lose muscle mass as they get older. True or False?

 2. The reason why diabetics can develop cataracts is because their blood fats are high and form a cloud of fat over the lens of the eyes. True or False?

3. Heating foods to high temperatures is okay for diabetics. True or False?

4. Heating foods in a microwave is perfectly fine for diabetics. True or False?

5. Eating foods that are fried speeds up oxidation in your body, which generates free radicals in high amounts. True or False?

6. One reason why Type 2 diabetics get neuropathy is because of the drug Metformin. True or False?

7. One reason why diabetics get neuropathy is because the nerves “dry up.” True or False?

8. Diabetics can use diet to control their blood sugar and bring it down at least 20 mg/dL (1.1 mmol/L) for fasting levels. True or False?

9. Diabetes affects the heart and blood vessels. True or False?


1. False. Type 2 diabetes is a disorder of carbohydrate metabolism. Carbohydrates are not broken down properly in the body when there’s diabetes. The blood sugar from the carbohydrate breakdown remains in the blood instead of going into the muscles. Your mission as a Type 2 diabetic is to lower your blood sugar and gain insulin sensitivity.
2. False. The cataracts are created from high levels of blood sugar. Protein foods may also be given a Glycemic Index.
3. False. Heating foods to high temperatures creates high amounts of advanced glycation end products, which bring on more diabetes complications and additional degenerative diseases such as high blood pressure. Protein foods may also be given a Glycemic Index.
4. False. Heating foods in a microwave superheats foods and causes advanced glycation end products.
5. True. Free radicals damage the body and bring on more complications of diabetes.
6. True. Metformin has been found to cause a vitamin B12 deficiency which causes peripheral neuropathy.
7. True. Nerves start out in a bundle and then divide into smaller and smaller nerves. The smallest nerves begin to wither up in diabetes until they do not exist. Protein foods may also be given a Glycemic Index.
8. True.
9. True.


Beverleigh H Piepers RN
Type 2 Diabetes Health Coach

Facebook: DrugFreeType2Diabetes
Twitter: @diabetes2diva




New Test to Replace the Hemoglobin A1c Test?

New Test to Replace the Hemoglobin A1c Test?
Posted by Beverleigh H Piepers RN, Dated 10-10-2014

The Hemoglobin A1c test measures blood sugar control over the last three months. It’s a sure way for health professionals to verify whether or not a diabetic is lying about what he or she has been eating.

Is there a new test to replace the HbA1c test?

Is there a new test to replace the HbA1c test?

Well now, the Hemoglobin A1c test may have to take a back seat to the new serum glycated albumin (GA) test. This test measures a shorter time frame and may be more useful.

It doesn’t mean the doctors still won’t measure the Hemoglobin A1c test. Actually, they’ll still need it because by looking at the ratio of GA to Hemoglobin A1c, the doctors may be able to correlate the pancreas ability to secrete insulin and also tell how much fluctuation in blood sugar occurred.

At two medical schools in Korea, doctors tested 42 volunteers with diabetes, both Type 1 and Type 2, looking for these relationships.

They found the ratio of GA to Hemoglobin A1c was significantly higher in Type 1 diabetics than Type 2 diabetics. The same ratio was correlated with the fasting plasma glucose.  They concluded that GA is a better test than fasting plasma glucose levels and the GA/Hemoglobin A1c ratio could predict insulin secretory function.

One more thing you should know – so far this has only been tested by these Researchers in children who are diabetics, not adults.

Just when you finally get the whole lab tests for diabetes down cold, the profession wants to change it! You already know you should always have a fasting blood glucose done when you go to the doctor, as well as a hemoglobin A1c, and an insulin level. Now they’re proposing the addition of glycated albumin.

Something to think about but don’t lose sleep about it!

Source: Lee, J.W., et al. Serum glycated albumin as a new Glycemic control for pediatric diabetes. Ann Pediatr Endocrinol Metab 2014 Dec; 18(4): 203-13.

Beverleigh H Piepers RN
Type 2 Diabetes Health Coach

Facebook: DrugFreeType2Diabetes
Twitter: @diabetes2diva

New Info on the Glycemic Index and on Foods/Diet for Diabetics

New Info on the Glycemic Index and on Foods/Diet for Diabetics
Posted by Beverleigh H Piepers RN, Dated 8-4-2014

We’ve reported on the Glycemic Index here on our site for several years now. It’s time to bring you the most updated information from the recent studies on the Glycemic Index.

Here are some new findings you may not know about yet:

1. A higher intake of dietary fiber was correlated with a lower risk of having high fasting blood sugar levels but not with a lower risk of high Hemoglobin A1c. However, the Glycemic load and amount of carbohydrates in the diet still were strongly correlated with high blood sugar levels.

Source: Farvid, M.S., et al. Glycemic index,, Glycemic load and their association with Glycemic control among patients with type 2 diabetes. Eur J Clin Nutr 2014 Feb 19.

2. Millet was found by scientists in India to have a Glycemic index of 50 when dehulled and a Glycemic index of 41.7 when dehulled and heated. Millet is 60% carbohydrate, 3.6% fat and 10.5% protein with 12.6% fiber and providing 398 calories/100 grams.

When fed to diabetics for 28 days, levels of laboratory indices fell:

Glucose            139.2                        131.1 mg/dl

LDL-C               167.7                        162.9 mg/dl

VLDL-C               24.0                          23.2 mg/dl

HDL                     3.2                            3.1

Source: Ugare, R., et al. Glycemic index and significance of barnyard millet (Echinochioa frumentacae) in type II diabetics. J Food Sci Technol 2014 Feb;51(2):392-5.



3. When 70 diabetic patients (Type 2) were given 1600 mg ginger versus 1600 mg wheat flour placebo daily for 3 months, the ginger improved insulin sensitivity. Specifically, fasting blood sugar, hemoglobin A1c, insulin, triglycerides, total cholesterol decreased along with CRP and PGE2.

The researchers concluded the ginger consumption can be a good way to prevent the complications of diabetes.

Source: Arablou, T., et al. The effect of ginger consumption on Glycemic status, lipid profile and some inflammatory markers in patients with Type 2 diabetes mellitus. Int J Food Sci Nutr 2014 Feb 4.

Pre-Diabetes Question: Since Diagnosed, Symptoms Showed Up. What Do I Do?

Pre-Diabetes Question: Since Diagnosed, Symptoms Showed Up. What Do I Do?
Posted by Beverleigh Piepers RN, Dated 15-7-2013

The pre-diabetic that wrote in with this question said his symptoms were the following:

  • dry mouth
  • can’t sleep
  • sleepy during the day
  • sluggish feeling like his body is heavy all day long
  • food doesn’t taste good
  • gets nauseous when he eats
  • urinates a lot
  • thirsty all the time

He was not on medication for pre-diabetes or Type 2 diabetes and is about 65 years old. He received his diagnosis of pre-diabetes last year in November and has been making excuses about going to the diet class, saying it’s too far to drive, he’d have to drive in traffic for the 3:30-5:30 pm class, he’s having difficulty driving, and more.

Now is the time…

But as you can see, time has been wasted and the clock is ticking for every pre-diabetic out there. There’s a window of time where you can grab back your good health and then that window starts closing. By the time you’re on your second medication for diabetes, the window is cracked open and you’re going to have to work even harder to stop the disease process.

This isn’t meant to warn you that you can’t reverse Type 2 diabetes at any stage; you can, but the longer you have it, it’s possible you won’t be able to reverse it totally.

You can see in his symptoms above that he has already reached the point where he’s thirsty and urinating a lot. This tells us it’s possible his pancreas already gave out and he may need medication right now. Food that doesn’t taste good anymore means a probable zinc deficiency, which makes blood sugar control more difficult.

Getting nauseous when eating, signals the liver is backed up and in natural healing, a backed up liver precedes a pancreas that’s backed up.

Don’t let another week go by if you have pre-diabetes. Your life truly depends on it.

Pre-Diabetes Question: Can I still eat lunchmeat?

Pre-Diabetes Question: Can I still eat lunchmeat?
Posted by Beverleigh Piepers RN, Dated 16-6-2013

Unfortunately, lunch meats are usually made with artificial preservatives and, possibly, even sweeteners. It’s best not to eat them when you are in the process of reversing pre-diabetes.

And remember you have a good chance of reversing it as many thousands of people have already done this.

Lunchmeats usually contain an artificial preservative called sodium nitrite, which becomes nitrosamines, substances that are cancer-causing.  Even though this occurs, the level is still within the USDA’s limit of 200 parts per million in most processed meats.

The processing of lunchmeats is a process that eliminates nutrients from the food and puts sodium in instead. These types of foods are notoriously high in sodium, in fact, which is linked to high blood pressure.

Since diabetics are at risk to develop high blood pressure due to the high insulin levels, then it makes sense that a pre-diabetic and a diabetic should not have lunchmeats.

What’s the substitute? Well it’s foods such as real chicken legs, real chicken thighs and breasts, real turkey, real beef roast, pork, lamb or buffalo meat. And ground meats – as long as they don’t contain any “pink slime”.

There are plenty of better choices than lunchmeats.

Pre-Diabetes Question: I know I have cataracts. Will they get worse with pre-diabetes?

Pre-Diabetes Question: I know I have cataracts. Will they get worse with pre-diabetes?
Posted by Beverleigh Piepers RN, Dated 29-5-2013

If you already have cataracts, unfortunately, a diagnosis of pre-diabetes is not a good thing.

What this usually means is that you’ve had pre-diabetes for awhile and the blood sugar is already “trained” to be deposited in your eyes.

Excess blood sugar has to go somewhere in your body. It’s similar to if you bring home a bag of groceries. No matter how full your refrigerator is, you have to still stuff the groceries into the refrigerator! No matter how full your cabinets are, you still have to stuff more into the cabinets.

You’ll rearrange things in the refrigerator and in the cupboards before you’ll throw out things, if you’re like most people!

And that’s what your body does. It rearranges the DNA of your proteins in your eyes to accommodate the high levels of blood sugar. Some of the blood sugar will go out in your urine, too. This is a good way to eliminate it – or is it? Actually it isn’t because the kidney is damaged along the way.

Your only solution is to take the steps necessary to lower your blood sugar. It’s not rocket science. It’s simple physiology.

Pre-Diabetes Question: Will Pre-Diabetes Affect Sex and Sex Drive?

Pre-Diabetes Question: Will Pre-Diabetes Affect Sex and Sex Drive?
Posted by Beverleigh Piepers RN, Dated 24-5-2013

Pre-diabetes won’t cause impotency but the longer your blood sugar level is higher than normal, you must realize those high levels of blood sugar have to go somewhere. Where do they go?

Blood sugar is deposited on nerves throughout the body.  This is why people get peripheral neuropathy. When excess blood sugar goes to the eyes, you get cataracts. When it goes to the area of the penis, then blood sugar gets deposited on the nerves of the penis.

This ends up interfering with how the penis works, just as when a person has peripheral neuropathy and can’t feel where his feet are in space.

If you value your sex life, start making the changes that have to be made to reverse your diabetes.

The top five changes are:

1. Lose weight if you are overweight.

2. Take sugar and sweeteners out of your diet.

3. Start exercising.

4. Start monitoring your blood sugar level with a blood sugar kit daily… so you can identify what’s getting you off track.

5. Consider using supplements and herbs.

Pre-Diabetes Question: How Does A Pre-Diabetic Not Become A Diabetic?

Pre-Diabetes Question: How Does A Pre-Diabetic Not Become A Diabetic?
Posted by Beverleigh Piepers RN, Dated 23-5-2013

There are two ways you can start reversing the trend of your body towards becoming a diabetic:

1. Start exercising.

2. Start making dietary changes.

To start exercising, you may want to kick-off with a simple 15 or 20-minute walk the dog session every day. This is a relatively easy thing to do and you will increase the bonding you have to your dog, man’s best friend.

When you start exercising, the good thing that happens is the muscles start taking up the blood sugar out of the blood. This is exactly what you need. Insulin resistance is seen in pre-diabetics and it means the muscles are stubbornly refusing to take in the blood sugar. This is why insulin levels end up so high – the pancreas tries to take extra measures to get the blood sugar into the cells, and insulin is a hormone that allows blood sugar to enter cells.

Even if you simply jump up and down for 2 minutes about 30 minutes after you eat, you will get the blood sugar into the muscle cells. The type of exercise really doesn’t matter much; it’s the exercise that is responsible for the change in blood sugar levels.

Exercise trains your body to put the blood sugar in the cells where it belongs.

Research studies show Type 2 diabetics who don’t exercise have higher blood sugar levels than those who do. So plan your exercise for the week today.

 Next is diet. If all you did was remove foods from your home that have sugar and artificial sweeteners in them, you’ll be making a huge step towards reversing your pre-diabetes.

And the beauty of this is that you will also be losing weight.